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Unemployment Eligibility Question - Michigan

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  • Unemployment Eligibility Question - Michigan

    I'm not sure if there is any relevance to the background information, but to be safe...My mother is an employee (non-teacher) of a public school district and is currently covered under a Teacher's Union contract. She is expecting to be laid off soon.

    It appears that, as part of the lay-offs, the district is offering employees the ability to remain working as a "substitute" until they are able to re-hire them. For the most part, the employees are continuing to work the same number of hours for the same wage and only having benefits frozen during the layoff period. However, the substitute status is officially considered to be work "as needed"; the status is not considered full-time employment and hours are not guaranteed. They are being told that failure to accept the substitute position will result in forfeiture of their right to receive unemployment benefits.

    My question is: Following a layoff, does a laid off employee"s rejection of a substitute, or part time position with the employer cause the forfeiture of the employee's eligibility to receive unemployment benefits under the actively seeking suitable full-time work provision? Furthermore, is this question in any way affected by the employer being a state-funded entity?

    Also, if anyone could provide a link to any on-point statute, reg or UIA decision, I would really appreciate it. Thank you in advance for your help.

  • #2
    Generally speaking, refusal of any reasonable work/job offer can result in a loss of benefits, even if it's just part-time or "as needed". The state would rather the individual have some income than none at all. Depending upon the number of days worked in a week and the wages earned, however, it's possible partial UI benefits could be payable thus (in theory, anyway) encouraging individuals to accept some work, even if it is not full-time work. She can contact the UI commission for more information on partial benefits.

    Anecdotally, I will add my personal experience and, although it is in Pennsylvania, the concept in similar in all states. My UI benefit was XX weekly. Any earnings less than X times 120% would get me at least some benefits. So let's say X was $400/week; X times 120% is $480. And I took a 2-day gig at $100/day. $480 - $200 = $280 in benefits.
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